fundrasing

day 210. last 24 hours, help me get back to brooklyn.

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the desire to be a bird

it's been over a year since i started fundraising and today we broke $7,000 USD. (thank you Josh Tabin)!

the next 24 hours are my last. tomorrow, by this time not only will i be in the air floating over the south and the mid-atlantic states, but i'll be floating on a cloud of your support, your love and your generosity. you have taken me around the world...

while on the road i've met our neighbors. no longer separated by countries, news outlets or mediaries... without a doubt we are connected to the same lawn with a bit of pond in between us all.

now on the last day of my journey, i am $742 USD away from achieving $7,777 USD. the next 24 hours will be your last chance to pre-purchase a copy of "the luck of seven" children's book i'm writing. the next 24 hours will be your last chance to immortalize a dream and forever stand on the shoulder's of a giant.

LIVE THE DREAM, CONTRIBUTE TODAY.

these people rock! add consider adding your name...

Michael Nutt, Josh Tabin, Michael McColl, kushtrim xhakli, Joe Vieira, Erica Douglass, Chuck Olsen, Megumi Nishikura, Nicholas Schroeder, and My Parents...

day 208. making plans for an NYC homecoming and spreading the gospel.

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entryway to disneyland
photo from punkjr on flickr

item #1, advice from my father.

today, i received a few inspirational notes from my father... while i know they are a bit muffled in verse, i was able to hear the sweet tone of loving comfort. let me hum a few bars...

"don't stop thinking about tomorrow. don't stop it'll soon be here. It'll be better than before. why not think about times to come, and about the things that you've done..."

yes, sometimes it's hard to distinguish between my father and fleetwood mac...

the past year has taught me more lessons than i could have possibly dreamed. those dreams found people who not only believed in exploration, but believed that collectively we can accomplish our dreams. though every hello, hug or heaping plate of food, we did it. collectively we've explored the internet world, but we're not done yet.

now i find myself in a precarious position. every night, i dream about the places i've been and the things i've done. painfully, i roll and roll debating endlessly what's the best way to engage the world within this dream, and how to make a living. i checked my bank account and only found $75... but more on that later...

so now, here i am back in america trying to understand everything i've done and make sense of where i'd like to see the world... honestly, it's stressful carving out a grandiose vision of the future based on seven short months. any-who, so work for the children's book presses on...

item #2, my nyc return.

after thinking that i should call my good buddy jonathan, i carelessly blasted out an email routing people to a bar which in perfect pursuit of happiness should be at the end of places to experience in brooklyn. don't get me wrong, it's not a bad place... it's just a better place to end the night. in lew of this miss judgement, jonathan and i are crafting a triumphant return to brooklyn. (btw, you might remember jonathan as the partner of val; the two glorious hosts at the start of the journey...)

yeah, so i'm returning to NEW YORK CITY on saturday, FEB 2nd at 3pm (15h00). well, that's when my plane lands... i'll then find my way onto the subway, down the long corridors of the MTA and then into the arms of a few friends. while i'm jazzing my way back to billyburg, i need you to grab your camera and some ridiculous looking outfit and make your way to the hipster capital of the world.

starting at 5pm (18h00) you are invited to meet me at 303 bedford ave, brooklyn, ny. the bar is/was called wells, but don't worry about a thing. we're commandeering the sound system and maybe brute forcing a discount (thats'a joke, jon is a bartender and we might get a sweet deal if enough people show up). afterward, we'll saunter over to IONA and then over to the keystone bar of the night, SPUYTEN DUYVIL.

item #3, the future as mentioned in the past.

as my around the world journey ends, a new one begins. i am so poor you won't believe how poor i am. over the past two months i've spent less that $600 USD to get by. for the past month, i've been beggin for handouts and frothing at the mouth for free food. i've max'd out my only credit card (actually i owe them $800 in late charges). i've got $75 bucks in my checking account, and $8 dollars in my wallet.

if you look at my ticker, i still have $700 USD to fundraise (which won't even cover my credit cards, but i've called them and they "kinda understand")... and if the phone call from my roommate is any indication my housing situation, i'm gonna need to kick in close to $900 in rent...

so what does this mean to you, the reader... well, one thing... my life has taught me to follow my heart and build on what i've learned. next week, when i land in a foreign country without a euro in my pocket, i will proudly stand in front of some of the world's smartest and extoll tales of our journey together. (for you geeks out there, LIFT is like TED but for normal people.)

if you haven't pre-purchased a copy of the luck of seven children's book, i hope you consider contributing $11.11 USD. if 70 people purchase a copy, i won't ask for another cent... (that's until i start the mel brooks swag campaign) if you've contributed and can contribute a little more, that would be awesome! thank you for making dreams come true!

a big thanks to the most recent contributors - KUSHTRIM XHAKLI, Megumi Nishikura, and Joe Vieira.

(btw, i'm also need a job, if you know of anyone who's looking for a well skilled student of new media, send them my resume...)

day 175. a rough passage to antarctica

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the end of the road

it is day 13 at the end of the earth.

for the past 13 days, i've documented my story via video. so far, i've kicked out 8 videos and wake up every morning staring south at my last challenge. check out my holiday request and repost it to the rest of the world.

every door that has opened has not opened to antarctica. instead, i find myself in a small town with a few new friends and a long list of admirers. i really haven't had a day to myself, and the constant challenges have tested every level of my being. i am now up against a brick wall fighting through negative thoughts and working hard to keep my spirt up.

i have made it to the end of the earth and very few make it past this point. as of today, it is unlikely that i will find a commercial voyage that i can barter. despite that everyone says the same thing - i will not give up holding up my sign - "will work for antarctica." i know there are still untested door knobs (or if you are on a boat, latches). nonetheless, it's time to explore the last foreseeable option.

voyaging on a cruse is not cheap. if you make it to ushuaia, a last min ticket costs in the vicinity of $7,000 USD. fuel will cost another $200 USD, and then one is forced to purchase emergency medical and evacuation insurance at $200 USD. with taxes and jazz, i'm looking at almost $8,000 USD.

i have traveled around the world on the trust and hospitality of the world! i have traveled to the end of the earth exploring our social networks. i have placed my life into the hands of the internet, and you have carried me to the end of the earth. no longer is this one man's dream; i know the world is watching.

by the end of next year, i promise you an inspiring movie that will rock your socks and bring you to tears. if you contribute, i promise you a children's book. i promise your faith, your trust, your love will be rewarded! just as the world has given me it's love, all content will be given freely for the world to view. i have trusted the world and together we stand strong.

i know to some it might sound absurd to make it to the end of the earth and not try what i've tried all along... so i'm going to do what i've done best: asking you, mr and ms internet to help. so here's kick... link to chipin widget for $8000. if you have the chance to give, please do... if you are a corporation and want to sponsor the rest of the journey, feel free... contact me.

if you have cruse contacts or an ace up your sleeve, help a brother out. :)

ps - if you feel that this is a frivilous cause and one shouldn't spend a single cent on this exploration - consider contributing to Alive in Baghdad (community journalism) or The Frozen Pea Fund (breast cancer awareness).

episode 33. day 170, my holiday wish.

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Recoded: 22 December 2007
Locations: Ushuaia, Argentina
Tags: holiday wish, hitchhiking, traveler, end of the earth, antarctica, adventure, ushuaia, argentina, video diary, luck of seven
Music: When The Night Feels My Song - Bedouin Soundclash
About: frustrated at the fact i couldn't seem to get the feeling of this video down, i spent two days editing. in the long run, i think this is the best hook i could cast. well this is my ehook, over the next 24 hours as most of christian world beds down awaiting santa clause, i will spread my net fast and wide. i know that if enough people see the dream, they will know that anything is possible. thank you all who have contributted. i will not give up on the thousand of you who have supported the dream. from the end of the world, yours truly. noneck (youtube video

a special thank you to east media

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Panorama of CoworkingNYC @ EastMedia

as you might know, i've been twitter'n my inner most thoughts. instead of cluttering up the public space, i'm letting loose on the private space. so far, it seems that some readers have left and others have picked up the trail... as this journey unfolds, twitter is truly beholden to the best (#2) and the worst of this trip.

despite the fact i had no money in my checking account, a few days ago i tweeted a problem with my ATM card. within a few hours, i received a facebook msg from, ruby on rails evangelist / developer and nyc buddy, jeffrey ng.

apparently, the gang at eastmedia (which jeffry is a founder) was wondering "WTF" was going on with the message... i was honest and told him that i had run out money and about to start a sponsorship drive. low and behold, east media has decided to contribute $500 to the journey.

so, to the right you'll now see a little east media logo... if you're in nyc and happen to cross their paths, look them up. they are really good people.

btw, there's an anonymous donor who will be contributing $1000 for production. does anyone else think that that is fucking amazing!!! also, i'm in discussion with a few "community" based sites who are interested in contributing funds...

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day 110. i met my maker

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the team (humble)

today, i met the guys and gals of chipin! honestly, it really was a blade runner moment! don't worry, i promise you a complete recap of the past three days. in the meantime, i need to snag a few hours sleep. tomorrow, i'll visit pearl harbor and then depart to sanfran.

in the meantime, check out shane's tweets and rox's vlog! (why? while rox is away, shane is my live saving host! THANK TONY KATZ for the tweet!)

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midnight (night 67/68) - i need money

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seeing how erica o'grady has started to pimp my 5hit... i guess i should tell you that i'm about $300 USD from getting stuck in India. while i've been working on a long winded post detailing my budget for the next four months, i'm just going to be frank.

i'm almost out of money... nay, in the real schema of things, I'M OUT OF MONEY.

if you haven't contributed to this project you really should. it's only $11.11 and you pre-purchase a children's book that i'm writing. don't worry, the book won't be filled with my GI stores nor the hazy nights in cairo. nope! the book will be a holism story detailing seven lessons weaned from my journey.

if your name isn't below, click on orange words "chipin" on the flash widget above.

(i should also note that this project has flown under the radar from many geek sites. help a brudda out and promote this project to your fav community.)

one week to go! (the email)

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freedom's burden

in seven days i depart to discover the new world

yes, it's true! this is my last week of insanity and jubilation. as the United States celebrates liberty and freedom from tyranny, i am gearing up to discover seven new freedoms.

to be honest, i am unsure of what comes next. departing from new york is the first step of many. unlike most trips, once i set foot in Prague, I have no firm transportation plans and will be purely dependent on the luck of hospitality. i am purely dependent on fortuna septi (aka the luck of seven).

while i might not have a traveling companion, i hope to bring all of you along. first, we need to spread the word. my good buddy, whurley, put up a link on digg and we need people to "digg it"

if we make the front page of digg, i can promise you many more contributions from around the world. also, if you have a blog, please toss up my chipin widget and ask your friends to donate. this trip is predicated on our connections. believe it or not, you are my first connection to the rest of the world.

also, i need your help in completing my itinerary. i'm looking for contacts throughout lebanon, israel, egypt, saudi arabia, india, southeast asia and south america. if you know any good techies, activists, organizers, coworkers, campers, thinkers, etc... send them my way...

OH and since today is the launch of the iPhone, guess what i have on camera? an interview with the first two guys sitting in line! whurley, raven and i trekked out the very night they set up shop. it really is a ridiculous video!

finally, i am having two parties. a going away brunch on saturday, 7th of july from 11 - 3pm, and another this sunday, 1 july. starting around 8:30pm, we will celebrate the first full moon of summer. both will be held in brooklyn, ny. if you are interested in attending, please rsvp.

on 1 july 2007 - starting at 8:30pm, please bring something to grill and drink. i will have some seven zins, i won't have the ability to turn water into wine. my good friend Jonathan Long will be spinning vintage tunes all night long as we watch the moon come to life.

on 7 july 2007 - from 11 - 3pm, please bring something to share. let it be a tub of wine, magic tricks or a basket of fruit, you will be introduced to my company of friends. as i know many of you, many of you don't know each other. once we have said our goodbyes, at 3pm, i will depart for JFK. i hope you can attend and celebrate friendship.

t minus 12 days - frustration & inspiration

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Speed with 12 days till departure, frustration seems to be my number one enemy...

in many of my other projects, i've always had the luxury of having a peer. now that this internal exploration is around the corner, frustration is the most common recurring emotion. frankly, i'd love to tell you about them...

first, gear preparation. over and over i count the items i have and know that i'm scheduling to take to much. the thoughts of production have enveloped my workflow to make a nervous wreck. without a doubt, the lull moments of preparation are killing me. to be honest, i've never been more scared in my entire life.

confounding these prospects are the responses from couchsurfing.com and the groups.drupal.org admins. both think that this project is not within their scope of promotion nor purview. which of course, only exacerbates thoughts of inadequacies of articulation. constantly, i ponder "what the fuck am i trying to say..." or "if i'm just blabbering on about some meaningless intersection of futility..."

then, when i attempt to say all of this on video, i can't. i get stuck mumbling.

too boot, it is well proven that my social network is meetspace not virtual. despise the fact that this has been a word of mouth campaign and that i think i have been successful at raising funds. i honestly anticipated being closer to $7,777. which also brings about further doubts of articulation.

ahh, then there is the fact that i can't seem to find my tickets for iberia airlines, nor even recall them being sent. this is despite the fact that customer service assures me they were sent but can not seem to locate a tracking number.

...and when all of this frustration has boiled to a point where i'm about to scream, i don't...

the converse of these situations lie within the company of good friends. it's true, you don't know how much something is worth until you loose it. ironically, the pain that first birthed this project is now rekindled. within each moment that passes, my desire to be sedate and amongst loyal, loving friends grows stronger. without a doubt, when i leave on the 7th, i will leave the best group of friends i've had the pleasure knowing.

then there are thoughts of an old love. to be honest, she is the real reason why this trip was conceived. with the heartbreak that enveloped my soul, i leaped into space looking to explore those things i did not know. now after many years, thoughts of her and this trip are tied into one.

i know that i can not escape this love, nor do i know how to bring it back. while my mind escapes in dreams of fancy, my reality around me boils into a gas. everyday is now a struggle. i no longer have the luxury of time.

within a few more days, hours, mins, my life will no longer be the same. now i must nestle myself into the lyrics of kris kristofferson "Freedoms just another word for nothin left to lose." if this trip is about exploring freedom, i must boil my thoughts and set them free.

breaking through USD $3,000!!!

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with 5 weeks to go, your donations have just placed me trough the $3,000 mark!

just to forwarn you all, i'm sending out a special message to all donors tomorrow. if you haven't joined the club of seven, i hope you take a chance and join today. ;)

welcome to the club

heading to chicago

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i'll be in chicago as of 8 am central... if anyone is interested in hanging out, give me a call at 917.657.6999.

also, i'd like to thank all of club of seven donors who have donated since april 15...

Just passed $2,000!

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Thank you Alexandra Deschamps! Your the lucky winner for setting me past $2000!!!

two months to go...

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Dear Friends,

Today, marks a very special day, not only has Luck of Seven crossed the 20% goal in fundraising, but in two short months, I will depart from my beloved city of New York to explore this planet. On 7 July 2007, and traveling for seven months, my feet will wander the earth contemplating seven topics of freedom. On the way, I'll be documenting the experience on the "Luck of Seven" travel site (Lo7).

The seven topics of freedom are not some crazy manifesto, but an exploration of a world without any borders. Our ability to transcend, distance, time and culture are unprecedented. With more people living in urban environments, our world is growing and condensing at the same time. Fundamentally the seven topics of freedom boil down to four: open source communities, open source technology, social entrepreneurs and the greater conversation of global change. Ironically, a few weeks ago my mother sent me Leo Buscaglia's "The Way of the Bull." If you haven't read Mr. Buscaglia's books you will find them highly entertaining. While I instantly laughed at the outrageous cover, I found this motherly highlight, "The only thing that is certain for us is change. To battle change is to waste our time; the battle can never be won. To become the willing ally of change is to assure ourselves of life."

Now with 07/07/07 quickly approaching and my first month planned out, I look at my life and see a wealth of opportunities to explore this world. BUT I can't do it alone. I need your help in three ways...

1. A small donation of USD $11.11.

Thank you donors!! As of today, we have reached 20% of Lo7's fundraising goal! Not only will your donations help me go around the world, but in return, I promise you an autographed copy of the book. In the meantime, luckofseven.com will continue to tell the story though rich media. < http://luckofseven.com/donate >

2. Spread the word and connect me with your other friends.

There is nothing more important to me than my friends. Though my past years of traveling and countless workshops, I know that we can make this a better place. Regardless if it's just a smiling face, a pint of beer or a hard floor to sit on, I want to visit your friends and say hello. Forward your friends this message and copy me < noel(at)noneck.org >! Then, if you have a blog or social networking site, spread the word. I really need the link love ;)

3. Organizational sponsors for equipment and travel.

In Prague, Transitions Online has asked me to teach on new media journalism to former Communist countries. While "on the way," I look forward to teaching, conversing and interviewing citizens of this earth. If you know of an organization that might be a good fit, please don't hesitate to forward this email or make a formal introduction. I'm quite keen on helping organizations adapt technological frameworks for their own uses, elevate the seven topics of freedom, and share my experiences at an organizer. Otherwise, I'm looking for sponsors to acquire equipment: an HD Camcorder, a GPS device, an GSM cell phone, etc... I have a list and would love to entertain any ideas. Have your people call my people!

... and with that, I hope you place your luck on seven and at least give a donation.

be seeing you...

noneck noel


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thank you to two new donors!

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thank you Matt Turck and a huge thank you to John Keegan for donating $77.77!

interesting news today

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one of the most elusive creatures on this planet is my younger brother. stuck in the middle of ohio, he's one hard fella to track down. in our post-easter convo, i've come to discover that his graduation is not in feb, it's not in jan, nor even dec. it is nov 17, conveniently located when i would be in Antarctica.

i'm still mulling over this change of course. i can still start the trip in europe. i've decided that africa is impossible to cover. unless i can find a sponsor to take me to a kenya, namibia and south africa, i might spend a majority of my time in egypt and the middle east. then on to india, nepal, thailand, vietnam, and maybe hong kong. in a weird twist, i will finally cross the equator on my way to australia and new zealand. from the land down under, i'm considering finding steerage in an aluminum tube in order not to miss my brother's graduation. after graduation and coincidentally thanksgiving, i'll start my trek ether with my brother and we'll venture south though the usa and onto central america in an idealistic quest to see the wind mills of antarctica or i will venture on my own to argentina, in a more immediate desire to make no stone unturned.

as you can guess, i love my bother very much, and since i have not graduated college. i must support my brother's desire to finish and in a more interesting twist, potentially join the military. that leaves me no other option than to bend convention...

oh, in other news, i invited 170 people to join my account on linkedin and i got 5 donations... ether people don't read the invites or they don't care, but you know who does?

thanks gang!

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on the luck of seven was an open-source, around the world project by noel hidalgo, a new york city based activist, organizer, barcamper and coworker.

for seven months, he traversed the globe. using a new media voodo (blog, vlog, wiki, flickr, couchsurfing, twitter, myspace, dopplr, and facebook), noneck harnessed the collective knowledge of the internet, and report on seven topics of freedom. this trip was funded by 253 people and supported, house, fed, and loved by countless others.

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